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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Special People

I am a special needs person. 

It's not my fault, I didn't ask to be this way. Most of the time no one would ever know. I pride myself on keeping it together, but I have no guilt or shame for being who I am. 

Sometimes I need quiet and dark to avoid over stimulation. Other times I need a lot of stimulation - visual and audio - to help me stay focused. No, I cannot tell you exactly when I will need these things. Advance notice is not a luxury I was given. 

What I was given is a quick mind, sometimes too quick even for myself to keep up. And a sensitive soul, if I seem distant it is because I can't always protect myself from your feelings. I absorb the pain of others and it is difficult to describe and even more difficult to handle. It has taken me 20 years of study and work to understand these things about myself and to learn coping skills. I'm still not 'normal'...whatever that is...but I can function in society and have caring relationships with people. 

Remember when you are meeting someone new or working with someone 'difficult', that it may be their struggle too and don't judge too harshly. 

We aren't trying to be hard to connect with or talk to. Some of us, like myself, feel more comfortable behind a keyboard or a microphone than face to face. Some prefer to be behind musical instruments, computers, cameras or whatever it is that makes them feel safe and allows them to communicate with the world. Every day we are out there trying is a victory. 

Not all invisible illnesses even have a name yet, let's be patient with each other.

Very few people with these types of special needs can understand these things for themselves, let alone have the capability of explaining it to others. I cannot speak for everyone with special needs, but I hope that my words will help bring understanding to those that are 'normal'. 

If you listen to our music, our work, our special ways of communicating, you will see we have been trying to say this all along...reaching out to the world the only way we know how.

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